If I had not seen it I would have not believed it if when someone told me. There she was on the evening news, and with some guy who was NOT ME; not only was it not me it was an old boyfriend who had abused her to the point of putting her in the hospital. She had told me she was going to see her sister in the U.P., but here she was on the news in Detroit next to Cobo Center; and the man with his arm holding her by the waist was not her sister. Now I was majorly pissed off.
I knew several people at the local TV affiliate, so I called in a few favors and got a copy of the raw news feed for that segment. Gail was in for a major surprise when and if she returned.
Allow me to make some introductions. I am Art Castor, 42, 6’ 0” 170 lbs. The woman I am pissed at is my wife of 18 years Gail Castor (formerly Hardwood). I’m a freelance news reporter and a published author. My wife is 5’ 6” and about 120 lbs with red hair and lots of freckles. She is very much on the slim side in terms of body shape, with smallish breasts and a cute butt. She also has legs to die for. She works at a small printing company as an account clerk. We have 3 kids; Art (not Jr.) 16, Amy 14, and Jack 11. Because of my career choice, I am the homebody. We live in a large (by Michigan standards) West Michigan City.
I met Gail when I went from elementary school to middle school in the seventh grade. She was from a different part of town and rode the bus to school. I thought that she, like a lot of the kids that rode the bus was sort of stuck up and cliquish. We did not do much interacting until we were sophomores.
I was and am very much into live theatre and music. Gail and I both tried out for a musical that the school was putting on to raise money for the music department. I got a small part as a farmer, and Gail was the girl I was wooing. She wanted to rehearse our parts together and I said OK.
We met at her house and used her basement for our rehearsals. Her parents were very supportive and welcomed me into their social sphere with great enthusiasm. After the show finished all of the performances, Gail asked if I would like to go to her house for a Sunday dinner. By this time I found a girl that was funny, smart, and I thought (as only teenage hormones can) very sexy. I said yes.
We appeared together in almost all of the school plays throughout high school and even were invited to appear in the local community college productions. I was also in several singing groups at school, so I was often performing with the school’s glee club and choir.
By the time we were seniors; we were joined at the hip, and did all of the High School things except have sex. I assumed that we were going to the Senior Prom together, but Gail decided in January that we were too exclusive, so she decided that we should break up. That was a very hard blow to my ego, but also an eye opener because after she returned my class ring (yes, at that time and era we were ‘going steady’) she started dating a guy from one of the other high schools in the city. I found out from some of the ladies that decided to comfort me in my sorrow that she had been seeing and dating this guy for a year or more. He was some sort of rich kid, and Gail must have wanted what she thought he could do for her.
This guy, Ross Jordan, I found out later, had three girls who all thought they were the one for Ross. I tried to tell Gail what I found out, but she refused to talk to me. Unfortunately for us she did not find out until after graduation and I was in basic training at Fort Knox, Kentucky. She tried to write to me, but I was so hurt and angry at her that I never opened the letters, and sent them all back to her in a box after I moved on to my duty station in Arlington, Virginia.
I did my three years as a training manual writer and sometime Intel Analyst. I came back to my home town and more then a few of my ‘friends’ updated me on Gail’s status. I found out she was dating another man (if 24 years old can be a man) who was from another rich family. He too was keeping several ladies on the side.
I had a few dates, but nothing clicked, and as much as I dislike admitting it I was a virgin. I was told by the ‘friends’ that the same could not be said of Gail. Her status had been downgraded from good girl to attainable but not easy.
I enrolled in the local community college in order to improve my writing skills and learn something of the news business. I wasn’t looking for a degree, just trying to hone my skills and make me more marketable as a reporter. At the same time I was writing ‘The Great American Novel’ and working as an ad writer for a local agency.
I found out while in the Army that alcohol and me were much too much very good friends, so I quit drinking at the ripe old age of 21. I still went to the bars and hangouts with some of my class mates and coworkers, but I was the designated driver long before that was a buzzword. While I was on one of these outings I ran into Gail and her “boyfriend” at a local bar and pizza joint.
Gail did not notice me, but I watched her closely, and she did not look very happy. Her ‘Asswipe’ was chatting up one of the waitresses while Gail was right next to him. When ‘Asswipe’ reached out and pinched the waitress’s fanny, Gail slapped him. That led me to get up and start over to where they were seated. Before I could get there ‘Asswipe’ hauled off and punched Gail right in the face. I ran to where they were, and without thinking pulled ‘Asswipe’ out of his chair and started wailing on him. I was lucky because my companions that were there with me pulled me off him before I did much real damage. ‘Asswipe’ got up and as he was being escorted out of the building hollered out “I’ll get you back for this bitch and your rescuer too”.
Gail had not looked up or around since she was knocked back into the seat from the punch she took. When she finally shook off the effects of the attack, she looked up at me. Her eyes got huge, she started to sob, and tears rolled down her checks. She then lunged into my arms and locked me in a death grip.
I patted her on the back and gently took her out to my car and started to put her in the passenger seat when she again looked at me and I could see that she had suffered some serious damage to her face. She tried to talk to me, but I could not understand her. I got in to the car and rushed to the nearest hospital emergency room. I explained to the staff what happened and was informed that the police would have to be notified as this was considered an assault. They took Gail to an exam room and would not let me in because I was not a parent, spouse or other relative. The nurses were kind enough to keep my informed of the extent of the injuries and updated on Gail’s condition. Turns out she had a dislocated jaw, and a severely bruised cheekbone, some minor cuts and several bruises that were not on her face. ‘Asswipe’ apparently like to use her as a handy punching bag.
The police came and informed me I was under arrest because ‘Asswipe’ called them and stated that I punched him for no reason and then did the same to his girlfriend. After hand cuffing me, and asking many questions (that I did not answer) I asked to call a lawyer. They then changed tactics by trying to be my friend and claiming that it was all a misunderstanding. When I again insisted on an attorney and asked to be unrestrained, they decided to try ‘good cop bad cop’ and also started to push me around.
Unfortunately for them, a couple of the ER nurses were there and witnessed every thing. When I finally was allowed to call my lawyer, the cops took the cuffs off and waited for my attorney. I thought it was odd that these cops never checked on Gail, and did not ask her about this incident. When my attorney John Chambers arrived, the police decided that they had made an error and that I was not under arrest.
After talking to John, I found out that ‘Asswipe’ was a police officer, and that this incident was not the first time he had been in this type of situation. He had a history of excess force, and also complaints of domestic violence. His tactics were when the complaints were made to put the blame on either the victim or “interfering do gooders”. It was just his, and my, luck that I was and am a stubborn and tenacious bastard, and would not roll over and let this go.
After the cops left, Gail asked for me and I was finally shown in to her treatment room. Gail’s jaw had been fixed, but with the swelling and bruises, she looked like hell. She was having difficulty speaking, but one of the nurses gave her a pad and pen so she could communicate by writing.
I asked how she was feeling. She tried to laugh but I could see the pain that that caused. She wrote that it hurt. I laughed but thinking that I came across as insensitive, tried to apologize. Gail just waved it away, and wrote in big capital letters “THANK YOU”. I told her about what had went on in the corridor and what the cops tried. She began crying and the Doctor asked me to leave so he could calm Gail down.
Gail was admitted to the hospital for observation and some more extensive exams and tests. I called one of the guys that I went out with that night and was told that taxis took care of our group, and that ‘Asswipe’ and his cronies tried to get all of the witnesses to keep quiet and let all of the night’s fun go away. Unfortunately for ‘Asswipe’ and company, the waitress filed a charge of assault for the butt pinch. ‘Asswipe’ (who I finally discovered was named George Batts) was finally arrested, charged and fired from the police force.
.... There is more of this story ...